The State of Land-Based Casinos in the USA

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Value of the Gambling Market

Even though Macau has been dubbed the “new gambling capital” of the world, in numbers, it is still behind the USA. Globally, the gambling market was worth $287.43 billion in 2021. By 2022, the global market number had grown to $449.04.

The United States contributed $60.42 billion to that global figure, with over 450 casinos in operation, and the MGM resorts generating the most income, followed closely by Caesars Entertainment. These numbers show that land-based casinos are not dead, and there’s still an appeal for gambling in real casinos. But the threat is still there. We live in a changing world where new technological advances are coming out daily. 

So, land-based casino operators need to adapt and change, or risk shutting down completely. That’s why Casinos such as the Crown Resorts have brokered deals with celebrities to be their ambassadors, while others have gone the sports sponsorship route, all in a bid to remain relevant in the current market.

The Ups and the Downs

The inception of online casinos in the USA such as betMGM and Borgata has created a great impact on the gambling industry worldwide, opening it to a new market. This generated millions of new revenue for the industry, but at the same time, it put a damper on the productivity of land-based casinos. 

As more and more people stayed home, placed bets, and played poker online, the land-based casinos suffered. Now, with the addition of virtual and mixed reality to online gambling, people may not see any need to dress up and hit the Vegas Strip. 

But online gambling hasn’t been the only factor in the decline of land-based casinos in the US. Global factors such as the economic climate have also impacted the tourism industry, inadvertently affecting the gambling industry.

But there’s some good news; compared to previous years (2019 – 2021), there’s significant growth in casinos in some states. In fact, American gamblers generated record-breaking numbers in 2022. This can be understandable, considering that the world could finally breathe and move around globally with unlimited restrictions. 

People were out to experience life and create new memories for themselves after a difficult couple of years. The New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement declared a $412.2 million gaming revenue total for February 2023, an increase compared to February of the previous year. Still, in 2022, casinos in Maryland had one of the most profitable periods. The six casinos in Maryland had a revenue of $174.74 million in April.

The Future of Brick-and-Mortar Casinos

While these numbers are encouraging, land-based casinos must adapt or face extinction. There’s a new gambler now, Gen Z, who wants interactive and immersive experiences. These players are the content creators, the envelope pusher, and the most tech-savvy generation. 

If casinos want to attract the new generation of players, as they should, they need to adapt to new trends. Younger players want more skills-based games rather than those that rely on luck. This is why eSports has enjoyed such success.

So, slots and games like roulette will continue declining as the older demographic dwindles. Casinos should look at card and table games and see what could be done there to ensure they remain an attractive entertainment to younger players.

Another issue is technological advances and adaptation. How can casinos adapt to advancing technology? Investing in other forms of entertainment such as eSports tournaments or mixed reality activities may be wise.

Key Notes

  • The iGaming market is expected to grow to $458.93 billion by 2026.
  • The UK had the highest online gambling revenue in 2021, raking in an impressive $12 billion.
  • The increase in tech and mobile gaming is driving the iGaming market growth rapidly.
  • In New Jersey, poker revenue went down and was estimated at $2.3 million in 2022 compared to 2021 at 2.54 million.
  • Land-based casinos have seen an increase in revenues recently, but they’re still much lower than they were in 2019 – 2020, at 21.5% lower in revenue.
  • The State of Nevada alone contributed $1.15 billion in tax revenue in 2022.


We can’t deny that in the battle between online and land-based casinos, land-based casinos are losing, and unless drastic measures are implemented, they’ll continue to do so. 

The casino experience is still great, with the gaming floor, glitzy furnishings and surroundings, and the general atmosphere at the tables and slot machines. It’s a social interaction everyone should experience and enjoy at least once in their lives, even if they’re not avid gamblers. 

The casino experience is unique online, but casino operators must find a way to sell this to the younger market. There are so many traditions we have built around casinos and places like Vegas. These include events like bachelor parties and birthday celebrations, and the end of Land-based casinos would mean death to those special events.